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Agriculture Education Students Awarded Kansas Agriculture Skills and Competencies Certificates

MANHATTAN, Kan. — Twenty-five students from seven schools in Kansas have been awarded the Kansas Department of Agriculture’s Kansas Agriculture Skills and Competencies Certificate. Of these, 24 were awarded the general certificate, five were awarded the animal science certificate and one was awarded the plant systems certificate. High schools with students earning certificates include Buhler, Centre, Ellsworth, Greeley County, Holton, Republic County and Wellington.

Students have completed requirements in the areas of classroom instruction, supervised agricultural experience (SAE) and FFA. They have demonstrated excellence in agricultural knowledge, career readiness and leadership development. Students must also maintain a cumulative GPA of 2.5 or higher in all school courses to earn the certification.

“The criteria to achieve these certificates represents more than just one specific exam, event, or activity on a single day but a culmination of successful involvement and achievement in multiple activities over four years of high school,” said John Clark, the agriculture education teacher at Buhler High School. “These students who earned these certificates should be proud of this high honor, which is only accomplished by students who are very well-rounded in a variety of requirements.”

KDA is committed to establishing a dynamic and well-equipped workforce that meets the diverse needs of the agriculture industry today. “Growth in Kansas agriculture will depend on a strong workforce, so we need skilled young people like these to support the future of the industry,” said Russ Plaschka, KDA marketing director. “These certificates show they have developed critical skills that will help them in their future careers, whether they end up on dairies, ranches, farms, agribusinesses, research labs, or in the variety of other employment opportunities in agriculture.”

The Kansas Agriculture Skills and Competencies Certificates meet the requirement for industry-recognized certifications earned by students in high school. Industry-recognized certifications are one of three ways that schools can increase the success rate for their postsecondary progress on their annual report card from the Kansas State Department of Education.

These certificates have been endorsed by several industry organizations and employers:

Kansas Animal Science Skills & Competencies Certificate: Kansas Farm Bureau, Frontier Farm Credit and Triangle H.

Kansas Agriculture Skills & Competencies Certificate: FFA Foundation, Kansas Farm Bureau, Kansas Grain & Feed Association and Kansas Livestock Association.

Kansas Plant Systems Skills & Competencies Certificate: Kansas Farm Bureau, Kansas Wheat, Frontier Farm Credit, Harris Crop Insurance, Hummert International, Scott Cooperative Association, Milliken Ag Concepts, and Middle Creek Seed.

Applications for the Kansas Agriculture Skills & Competencies Certificates are accepted each spring. To find more information, visit agriculture.ks.gov/ageducation.

Kansas Agriculture Skills and Competencies Certificates:

Buhler High School

Jackson Childs

Thomas Compton

Hunter Durham

Jaylee Giles

Maren Lackey

Kacey Lehl

Mace McCabe

Jared McQuilliam

Carson Moler

Bradley Neill

Marissa Orem

Tanner Tustain

Bonner Van Bruggen

Caroline Wagner

Kaden Warner

Abigail Yutzy


Centre High School

Quinten Bina

Kyle Peterson

Tanner Stuchlik


Ellsworth High School

Nicole Haase


Greeley County High School

Payton Walk


Holton High School

Katina Bartel


Republic County High School

Nicole Popelka


Wellington High School

Baylee Newberry


Kansas Plant Systems Skills and Competencies Certificates:

Wellington High School

Matthew Pryce


Kansas Animal Science Skills and Competencies Certificates:

Buhler High School:

Hunter Durham

Jaylee Giles

Maren Lackey

Kacey Lehl

Caroline Wagner